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Resolution 2019-03

Regarding the Proliferation of Dockless Electric Scooters

WHEREAS, dockless electric scooters are a new form of transportation that has become increasingly popular in the United States; and

WHEREAS, the appeal of these scooters is that they may be retrieved from and left anywhere because they do not need to be parked at a docking station or rack; and

WHEREAS, as a result, users are leaving these scooters in locations that block curb cuts, obstruct sidewalks, block bus stops and stoops, and generally disrupt the flow of pedestrian traffic; and

WHEREAS, users further endanger pedestrian traffic by riding these scooters on sidewalks and other pedestrian rights-of-way; and

WHEREAS, these scooters are virtually silent when in use, making it impossible for those using nonvisual means of travel to detect them; and

WHEREAS, the public is encouraged to contact the various scooter companies directly to report scooter misuse, request that a scooter be moved, or report an injury or other concern by calling the company, visiting the website, or making a report using the app; and

WHEREAS, the blind cannot identify the scooter companies’ names, phone numbers, or websites because the information on the scooter is available only in print; and

WHEREAS, blind people are further denied the opportunity to make reports or issue complaints since scooter websites and apps are generally not accessible using access technology; and

WHEREAS, few laws in the United States regulate the use of these scooters, and laws that do exist are inconsistent from city to city: Now, therefore

BE IT RESOLVED by the National Federation of the Blind of  California in Convention assembled this  10th day of  November, 2019, in the City of Milpitas,  California , that this organization urge the  California Department of Transportation, the California Legislature , city councils, and regional and local governments to work with the National Federation of the Blind of  California to enact laws regulating scooter use to control parking, prohibit riding on sidewalks, and generally avoid disrupting the flow of pedestrian traffic; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this organization call upon agencies with the power to create regulations governing the use of dockless electric scooters to consult with the National Federation of the Blind of  California about the safety and identification of dockless electric scooters; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this organization demand that all dockless electric scooter companies place their company name, scooter identification number, and contact information on each scooter in a format accessible and easily detectible by the blind and that these companies develop accessible websites and mobile applications so that blind pedestrians can easily make reports of misuse or injury; and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this organization call upon the  California Congressional delegation to enact legislation establishing a minimum sound standard for dockless electric scooters  while they are moving.

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